The word storytelling says it all. A story on its own is lost, telling it to others makes it found.
As a child I loved listening to Jackanory. A TV show that was broadcast every week day for about 15 minutes. One book, split into sections and read aloud by a celebrity, usually an actor. Their skill in timing, quality of timbre and facial expressions added to the dynamic of the spoken word. The only other visual injection was the occasional illustration – a static picture.
These days I doubt children would have the patience to sit and watch a story being told without much accompanying action. Yet, before radio, television, even the cheap printed book, storytelling has been imperative to human culture. In some parts of the world, it still is, with generations handing down myths and vital tales. The stories has only truly become written in the last couple of centuries with universal literacy programs aiding their dissemination, before then ideas were spread by speech, simply around a fire or elaborately through plays.
As a writer the story is the essence of what I write. Without it, I’m creating a rambling prose of nothingness. When lost for ideas, why not try reading a story out loud – I do it most nights with my youngest child. It re-kindles those storytelling genes, which must be in us all.
Rudyard Kipling – Just So Stories